The Heavy Cost of Light


In time darkness is softened along the edges,

losing a grip on the rim of the moon

but still visible in the shaded pools of Nuuanu.

Mostly unseen, this transitioning

into morning surfaces

serene streams of penciled lines

drawing out the movement,

the illusion of time,

how all is subject to its division,

a revision of the bliss we knew as children.

Our passage, an indentation in someone’s memory

and nothing besides belief in something grander,

a glimmer in thickets of bamboo and banyan.

In the translation of a moment’s whim

the word gets out like a wind

through the gnarled branches of past instances.

What should have stayed within palace walls,

escapes like a confession

and in this expression

we diminish what is sacred,

wringing out any secrets with a reckless pretension

as we transition online and appeal for attention.

Photos shrink the moment,

while egos inflate with over exposure,

every posture crowding the foreground

obscures nature until it is rendered irrelevant.

Under compulsive scrutiny

we cannot escape the desecration of those walls.

It comes inadvertently from increased foot traffic

in the worn out light,

an oppressive weight as it falls into disrepair.



The Thin Veil between Me and Time

moon with dark shadow

The moon has a thin veil to shed

a transparent mask fastened to the skyway.

Its vanity is a temporal emissary

to the distant lampshade it becomes

cool and aloof

its grave aspect, like a faceless woman

turning towards me suddenly,

recalls the Japanese tales of Noppera Bo

and its the sea that receives the glow,

the sorrowful fallout of her vacancy.

Spellbound on the silvery sets,

the wave face wept in isolation,

betraying the dark behind her creation.

She draws in luminous figures,

solitary strays, clouds clinging to light

but without warmth

will not linger for long.

See them cast in dissipating craft

to disembody at the precipice,

the Nuuanu Pali disassembling into a V

where the past is trapped

under the gravity of its vortex,

one colossal hex

on the volcanic continuity of rims.

Yet there is a transcendence

to this slant of light

as it imbues these sublime heights

while I pursue the fine line

between logic and superstitious flight

on the narrow paths

all the moments that won’t last

get between me and time.

Taking another precarious step

to strike a balance between guesses

and surefooted surrender

to the next precious expression

I fall under.


With No Windows Save the Sky


Expressions of dream imagery

to drink slowly through a straw

confessions of extreme honesty

reflected in grey waters back home

a film over childhood borders

a whisper of fog

beneath the loudest of thoughts

a hijacked word

arresting the soul

from somewhere offshore,

in the ringing of the mast pole

rhythmic and in time

as if none has elapsed

between bedrock

and the most wayward of tracks

far flung,

the gulls go there now

looking for scraps

from languid lobster boats

switching their traps.

Follow the luminous wings

in the wind high pitched

above factory walls of red brick

in cities you once knew

until one by one

they’ll fall on the edge of view

at the furthest point

there’s no urban renewal

only a pillbox hut from World War II

with no windows save the sky

pointed through a frame with no door

laying down on a rock filled bottled floor

to breathe into a shaft

lowered into the sea

down that ancient stair,



terraced into the immensity

like bones in a darkening throat

you listen for notes

to create a rapport

regurgitating words

from the ocean floor.

Subterranean Markings


Watercolors in the human weathering

The luxuriant wetness of selves disintegrating

The cellar paint dissolving into a new wave

The sound of music fills the subterranean cave.

Dripping, drawing patterns on the walls.

Vast collections of familiar discord,

childhood recollections,

various associations of punishment and reward

soon lower their coffins under the floor boards.

The memories house

the Bauhaus

a soundtrack to the first time you sensed fear,

it attacked your senses with a lid shutting kind of creaking,

<releasing a chill down the spine.

You didn’t realize at the time

the significance of this feeling.

Fingers roam cool porcelain

the ceiling

another layer of skin

to gaze at everything

through the mosaic past.


It starts with a flash

a moving flesh of light

shapes surface with the parting aperture

see-through windows

that watch the other blur

into a double exposure.

The vague trace of these markings

linger under the branches

of the banyan veranda.

Scents linked to memory

form faces

rooted in nostalgia.

All the expressions made of tears

pulled apart as opposed to crying

like the Velvets with colors

running through disparate images

appearing as fodder

to the interpretor

of the endlessly turning

large screen projector.

Going backwards through the frames

through portals and parallels

the process remains the same.

The self tries to relate to the whole

subject to paradox

reason obscuring the goal

like fog in a forest

and you’re lost again and again.

A film over the eyes strained

to work thin sheets

stained by abstraction

absorbing the experience

though it lacks protection

from obsession

from cracks that fracture the dream

unbound manuscripts of wind

scattering the scene

you were taught to repeat

again and again.

From the roots you unfold scrolls

in the sleepy knolls of an idle mind.

It controlls the reels and the fiction.

With vast strokes

it creates worlds by hand

words that mime

the sound of the ocean

courting the sand of the shoreline.

Silhouettes of residual spray

break apart

in the ecstacy of its art.

That which is never fully attained,

captured nor explained,

motions to bear witness

to the most transient of masterpieces.


Without Landmarks

image 3


like the night,

is never still or silent.

Its maneuvers shadow the palm fan,

quivering like a stray

that ran from underbrush

and into the corners of sight.

A brief foray into the light,

these myriad expressions pressed in parchment,

addressed to willing ears,

descending spiral stairs

to grope without landmarks.

Wandering alone, is that signal

flashing in the distance

enough to guide or provide relief?

Or is it only the heat lightning

of brief enlightening?


what has this to do with redemption?

Words from out of the past,

resurfaced, reused,

infused with new imagery

that burst like a capillary

from out of tired wrists.

All education is dying slowly.

worming through sentences,

towards another border

with nothing to declare.

So close to home,

this place will be your undoing.

Stitch by stitch,

this furtive fabric of fingers roaming

over the secrets you kept to yourself,

in nights of torn confetti

bursting from out of dreams.

Words like slow daze shadows

tightrope across tree limbs,

nothing to cling to but much to uncover

in the swaying fabric it follows.

Dreams at their most palpable,

invisible during the day,

now hold silent sway in dark dominion.

Like a fruit that blooms in the last layer of night,

cycles of thought re-emerge

to form just below the surface of an urge

to keep from drowning, words buoyant

in night seemingly endless and without morning.

Osiris in obsidian silences

sizes up another descent.

The pen points below

with words beginning to decay

as they travel downward

and further away from the source.

They have perfected the art of subtle entry.

Transformation and then dissipation beneath the surface

to caress expressions of profound wetness and silence.

Projecting notes over the sheer inevitability of cliffs,

those endless horizons to dream on,

the tranquility of moons on surfaces to gleam on,

to unwind crystalline spools

of ocean jewels

loosened but not grasped,

you choose this place to unravel at last.